Published On: Wed, Jan 2nd, 2013

Focus on the future instead of the past

WILLEMSTAD — The South-Korean ambassador Key Cheol Lee recently visited the island. In an interesting conversation about the success of South-Korea and what this could mean for the island, he stated South-Korea would gladly work together with Curaçao by exchanging information. The ambassador mentioned several aspects, which a country should consider to be successful. However, the most important aspect for him is that a country focuses on the future rather than on the past. That South-Korea needed less than forty years to develop from the poorest country to the best developed (donor) country was certainly not due to magic. The success story of South-Korea is due to the intelligence, the hard work and the future-oriented character of the population, but especially of the leaders and their vision, said Lee.

Furthermore, it is also very important to help other countries. South-Korea is one of the largest ‘donor-countries’ in the world history, Lee emphasized. South-Korea has become a strong and rich country that gladly wants to help other countries in the financial field. Another form of help is sharing knowledge and experience. According to Lee, South-Korea is prepared to work together with Curaçao by means of benchmarking, or comparing each others policy, practices and philosophies and sharing experiences. One must not only share the good experiences and without going into details as to which mistakes South-Korea made or not, Lee emphasized one could also learn from each others mistakes and bad experiences.

Lee was very impressed by the island. Curaçao is more developed than he thought and the people of Curaçao are always prepared to help each other, which he considered positive.

Leader with a vision

Although a country must focus on the future it is also very important that it is governed by a leader with a vision, said Lee. For him, this man was Park Chung-hee. He was the man who had steered South-Korea in the right direction. He also arranged that the Koreans understood education is one of the most important aspects for a good development of a country.

The economy of Korea had developed considerably during his period of office. The government had developed a good infrastructure and laid the basis for the economic development during his period of office, Lee added.

In the decennia that followed the economy of South-Korea showed a considerable growth. The country has complete democracy and is still the best developed country with the fastest growing economy. The market economy of South-Korea has a fifteenth place worldwide due to the nominal GIP and a twelfth place due to purchasing power parity (PPP).

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